Not available in 2015/16
DV434      Half Unit
Human Security

This information is for the 2015/16 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Mary Kaldor


This course is available on the MSc in African Development, MSc in Conflict Studies, MSc in Development Management, MSc in Development Studies, MSc in Development Studies (Research), MSc in Global Politics, MSc in Global Politics (Global Civil Society), MSc in International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies and MSc in International Migration and Public Policy. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

No more than 5 students, per academic year, can be accepted from programmes other than the listed programmes. Capped at 30 students, first come, first served in order of priority.

Course content

This inter-disciplinary course will introduce students to the concept of human security. Human security refers to the security of individuals and communities as opposed to the security of the state. It combines physical security and material security; freedom from fear and freedom from want. The course will introduce students to the debates about the concept and its relevance in the contemporary era. It will combine political, military, legal and economic approaches to human security implementation. The course will cover topics including:; intellectual foundations and debates over the concept of human security; new and old wars; persistent conflict; just war thinking and whether it can be applied to human security; international humanitarian law and human rights law; humanitarian intervention and the Responsibility to Protect; international capabilities for human security; counterinsurgency, stabilisation, and statebuilding; transitional justice.


15 hours of lectures and 15 hours of seminars in the LT. 1 hour and 30 minutes of lectures in the ST.

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to undertake class essays as well as class presentations. Students will receive feedback on both.

Indicative reading

Mary Kaldor, New and Old Wars: Organised Violence in a Global Era, Polity Press, 2006; Shannon Beebe and Mary Kaldor, The Ultimate Weapon is no Weapon: Human Security and the New Rules of War and Peace, Public Affairs, 2010; Ruti Teitel, Humanity's Law, Oxford University Press, 2011; Marlies Glasius and Mary Kaldor, eds, A Human Security Doctrine for Europe, Routledge, 2005; World Development Report 2011: Conflict, Security, and Development, World Bank, 2011; Human Security Report 2005, University of British Columbia, 2005; Human Security Now: Report of the Commission on Human Security, Co-Chairs S Ogata and A Sen, United Nations, 2003; A Human Security Doctrine for Europe: The Barcelona Report of the Study Group on European Security Capabilities, Barcelona, 2004; G. Evans, M. Sahnoun, et al., The Responsibility to Protect: Final Report of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty, Ottawa, 2001; Independent International Commission on Kosovo, The Kosovo Report, Oxford University Press, 2001.

Assigned reading will be given for each session.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.

Student performance results

(2011/12 - 2013/14 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 8.9
Merit 81.1
Pass 10
Fail 0

Key facts

Department: International Development

Total students 2014/15: Unavailable

Average class size 2014/15: Unavailable

Controlled access 2014/15: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course survey results

(2011/12 - 2013/14 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 88.9%



Reading list (Q2.1)


Materials (Q2.3)


Course satisfied (Q2.4)


Lectures (Q2.5)


Integration (Q2.6)


Contact (Q2.7)


Feedback (Q2.8)


Recommend (Q2.9)